Accelerating your business, by celebrating Christmas.
Dashing through the snow, in a one-horse open sleigh, is an average of 150 percent increase in spending during Christmas time. Exploiting this opportunity without abusing it could be quite a wrestle.
While Jingling and Minglingat Seedstars’ festive co-working space in Maadi, we explore a few exhibiting startups, most of which are growing organically, and ask them what does the festive season mean to their businesses.
Joumana Abdul Khalik is an architect who has made a hobby out of journaling her health habits on a monthly basis. Later, she decided to share what she loves to do so dearly with people, and make a business out of it beside her original corporate job. “I started Se7etty on Instagram last November and it’s doing better than expected,” she tells Startup Scene. “I sold around 100 copies of the December planner. Not only that, but influencers, doctors and nutritionists have reached out to collaborate and work out partnerships.” Se7etty is a monthly planner that is categorised by themes according to each month's chakra, and helps people keep track of their eating and drinking habits.
In the beginning Abdul Khalik would launch her copies three days before a certain month starts; but then, noticing how similar startups do it year-by-year, she realized Se7etty’s sales would do much better if she launched it every December. So instead of selling month by month, or a 6-months-package at a time, she launched a New Years’ edition.
“I felt like Christmas would be the best time to sell Se7etty planners,” she says. “I think it make the perfect gift to bring as a Secret Santa; anyone would love to get this for a friend. This season in general is the perfect time to start thinking about your New Year’s resolution, ‘new year, new me’ sort of thing; to be fitter, healthier.”
Vecchio is a fashion brand that has been up and running for a year and a half, inspired by the worldwide movement of being zero-waste and environment-friendly. But not only that, Nouran Sleat, the co-founder has also made a hobby of using her mom’s old clothes and turning them into something that she wants. “So, we’re trying to project that on our pieces,” Sleat tells Startup Scene.
Seif Attar, her co-founder, lived in Italy for a while and got immersed in the zero-waste movement that has become a mainstream culture across the European ecosystem. “We want to apply the zero-waste philosophy on our brand;” Attar explains. “So, instead of throwing it away, you can always turn it into something new and let someone else make use of it while earning some money in return.”
Vecchio’s sales are heavily affected by seasons. “Spring is our favourite season,” Sleat says. “Summer is somewhat a lower season, because people are busy traveling and spending time by the beach, but we worked around it by sending some of our products to summer destinations in Egypt.” Last winter wasn’t a very fruitful season for Vecchio; sales went downhill. “So, we’re trying to level up our products by tailoring the bombers ourselves, to establish a strong winter collection,” Attar says.
“Hopefully being more present in Christmas events would get the numbers on track,” Sleat says.
"I’ve been a kitesurfer for quite some time now, I practice CrossFit, I do yoga, and I’ve been a volleyball player for 11 years," Omar Gaballah tells Startup Scene. "Every time I tried to start doing something new, and add a hobby to my long list, I struggled in the long and hectic process of going on Google and looking at articles, watching YouTube videos, going to Facebook groups, asking my Facebook friends, and calling the centres themselves. The process sometimes even pushed me to quit looking for any new activities."
This inspired Gaballah to establish his startup X-Venturer that launched in August and struck deals with 27 activity providers; which are also other startups that offered from travel packages to sport and recreational activities. X-Venturer is a platform that connects the likes of Gaballah, outgoing people who are always scouting for activities, with those vendors.
So, just like it's a season full of opportunities for Vecchio and Se7etty, Christmas is not any less resourceful for X-Venturer. "Christmas is a very good season to travel, and try new activities for a change;" says Gaballah "It can also be a great opportunity to buy your loved ones gifts that are out of the box."
Photography is courtesy of #MO4Productions.
Photographer: Ahmed Ashkor
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